Okay, why are we here again? - Well, AMD has once again released a new CPU, but this is using the same name as previous yet still fairly new CPU. Confusing? - I know; it is to me as well. One month ago to the day, AMD released what it likes to call the Phenom II processor. While it is an update upon the original Phenom architecture, it still uses the same AM2+ board architecture. For that reason it may be prudent to call it a Phenom II, but what does this mean for a new CPU that supports a whole new processor socket? - Well, that's where things now get dicey.
AMD's new addition to its Phenom II family just one month after the initial introduction of the Phenom II processor is the AM3 based system. Today we have been sent two new processors which are AM3 compatible; the Phenom II 810 and the Phenom II 720BE.
However, we've a bit of sad news that needs to be mentioned before pushing onward. While we originally intended for this preview to be a full glimpse into the AM3 platform architecture and its performance characteristics with our complete benchmarking suite lined up, unfortunately due to some technical difficulties we fried our DDR2 memory before beginning our tests and didn't have a DDR3 based AM3 board on hand to continue.
We did manage to hunt down some performance memory but it didn't arrive in time for today's launch. However, we are expecting it within the next day or so and you can expect to see a dedicated Socket AM3 performance article with all of our usual benchmarking tests go live a little later in the week. It should be mentioned that we will also be doing a comparison article between Phenom II using DDR2 and DDR3 very shortly, so you will be able to make your choice on what will be the best setup for you.
Until then, keep reading on as we delve into the AM3 architecture and what advantages (if any) the new socket brings on paper.